Support falling short for high-speed rail 

Earlier this month, California’s non-partisan CPA Peer Review Committee issued a scathing report stating that no new loans/bonds should be issued for high-speed rail. They said the plan lacked “credible sources of adequate funding … appropriate management” and is a “fundamentally flawed program” carrying “an immense financial risk” to California’s budget.

All nonpartisan reviews to date agree the Legislature must not assume $115 billion in new high-speed rail debt, since Gov. Jerry Brown simultaneously proposes huge cuts to seniors, children, K-12 supplies and welfare. A December Field Poll shows 75 percent of Californians do not want funds spent on high-speed rail. This means Brown’s new tax propositions will almost certainly be rejected by voters if the Legislature proceeds to assume massive new high-speed rail debt — $230 billion after interest is repaid.

Mike Brown, Burlingame

Shameful ticket hoarding

I was shocked by The San Francisco Examiner’s Friday story that the Recreation and Park Department has 42 tickets for every 49ers game. These tickets are given out to The City’s elected officials, while the workers who keep that department running get none.  One city supervisor is getting a free ticket while he actively tries to cut workers’ benefits.

Also I am a 49ers season-ticket holder and want to say that all of the fans around me were respectful of the opposing team’s fans.

Ellen Leaf, San Francisco

Beware of Newt’s bite

When CNN’s John King tried to blindside Newt Gingrich at last Thursday’s South Carolina GOP debate, it blew up in his face. Whether or not you like Newt Gingrich, he is not one to run from a fight, which is likely why he won that primary.

King, in an interview afterword, claimed he knew Gingrich would attack him. That is hard to believe, based on the audience nearly booing King off the stage. Does anyone really believe he expected that response?

Keith C. De Filippis, San Jose

GOP needs Hispanic vote

It’s the demographics, stupid. If Republicans intend to win the White House in 2012, they need to garner a higher percentage of Hispanic votes. That means the 12 million illegals living and working here for 10 years or more will not be deported.

What is needed is a path to legal status that does not put anybody ahead of legal applicants. When Republicans start thinking along these lines they will be victorious. Otherwise, we might as well get used to the idea of four more years of Obama.

Philip Melnick, San Francisco


Time to leave Afghanistan

Now that we’ve been at war in Afghanistan for 10 years, it’s time to get out. Our enemies in Afghanistan are the bad guys, but our friends there are the bad guys as well. We went in to get Osama bin Laden, who we killed in Pakistan. The terrorists who attacked us on 9/11 were mostly from Saudi Arabia.

Now it’s 10 years and $10 trillion later. There is no reason to be in Afghanistan one more day, to spend one more dollar or to give one more life to the cause. What should we tell the mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, daughters and sons of those who are dying there for nothing?

Marc Perkel, Gilroy

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